"Earth Sick Mind"

by Earthdog

"Earth Sick Mind" is the first full-length effort from the Sludge/Doom/Stoner Metal band Dusted Angel from California. The first thing to grab my attention was the name of Clifford Dinsmore, this dude sure gets around. Spaceboy, Gargantula and Bl'ast and now Dusted Angel; four bands miles apart musically from each other so Dinsmore is certainly a very talented gentleman. Dusted Angel are nothing like the hardcore sound of Bl'ast or the spaced-out drug-rock of Gargantula and Spaceboy, Dusted Angel play Doom Rock that injects influences from 1970 to now without getting bogged down in any of these decades of sonic exploration. Trying to compare them with anyone is a task I wish not to indulge in... they have been compared with Kyuss but for my money, that is way off and way too  simplistic a judgment to make, even though tracks like "Dogwhistle" do take you back to the early days of Desert Rock.

Dusted Angel don't dwell on one formula for too long, opener "The Thorn" starts off in an very traditional Stoner Doom manner but subtle changes like the chord progression that soon enters this tune takes their music to another realm time and again. "The Thorn" keeps moving by switching between quieter parts to driving energetic Stoner Metal grooves with Dinsmore's band-mate and also ex-Bl'ast member, Bill Torgerson unleashing some real pulverizing drumming. The next tune "Seeking the Dawn" gallops along with an old-style kind of Heavy Metal fury. It's effective at first but ends up being a case of heard it all before and done much much better than this. Things do improve in a big way with "Tards on Shards" that is repetitive without getting too bland. One problem I have with this album is sometimes you get the feeling the band are simply recycling their own riffs to take up time but "Tards On Shards" is one of the golden moments on the album. Despite it being the longest cut, it's also the most enjoyable.

"Scottstober" takes a while to get into gear but once it does, it is a gem of a tune with a decent amount of grit to it while "Dogwhistle" is a heavy, southern-styled basic riff-fest with a fine groove that ends all too soon and I hate it when songs do that. "Pulverizer" does indeed pulverize in a old-school kind of way, I thought of the mid-80's Californian Black Metal scene when I heard this track, it has similar kind of break-downs that were used by a hell of a lot of Metal bands back then. The album ends with the title track and it seems a little generic with a feeling you get that they were a little short on ideas so they just dragged out the ideas they had for the sake of another tune. So it's a mixed bag of Stoner Metal, Sludge, Doom with some hardcore elements thrown in there. The production is alright but the vocals sound buried at times. Most of this does a good job of crushing your brain-cells and will make a fine addition to your list of Cali bands to check out. From what I have heard they have built up a solid following by playing with bands like Nebula, Saviours, Saint Vitus and Black Cobra and I can imagine they would go down a treat at those type of shows. The album is a little short but if you pick up the i-tunes version ,you get a bonus track titled "Sensory Obliteration" which I haven't heard (I wish I had have known that first) but either way I still recommend you check this out......7.5/10